Sunday, February 14, 2010

Bead it!

Its no secret- Parenting is HARD work! Just as I think I've figured out something or mastered a way to deal with a situation or child, I get hit by the truck of 'reality' and something new gets thrown into the mix or a child changes their way they react or don't react to different situations. It's a constant roller coaster ride, and most of the time I feel like I am in the front seat with no seat belt ready to fall flat on my face at any wrong turn.
Lately, my biggest frustration is the way the children speak to one another and the way they speak to us (Brenton and I). It's the constant- "I am better than you" argument all day long. So, we are instilling a new system in our house. Thanks to the Super Nanny (of course) we are using beads as rewards/consequences. I plan to add or remove the emphasis as we see needed. Right now, we are working on WORD CHOICES! I want to remove back talk, whining, arguing, and of course bathroom talk. Ans I would love to increase speaking lovingly to family members and using manners (without being told).
Here is what we told the children. When we see the type of talk/ behavior that we are looking for- we will tell them they can add a bead to their jar. When we see the opposite of what we are looking for, we will talk about it and they will need to remove a bead. They are working together to reach that top ribbon and when they get their we will all go out and do something fun as a family. Then we will start over until their new way of talking becomes natural/ normal. Another aspect that I like about it is it will keep us accountable as well. If Brenton or I speak in an unkind way, they earn a bead too, so we need to be constant examples. We just started it tonight, and they were over-the-top nice to one another and extremely eager to help around the house, so we will see how the next few days pan out. I am sure the fun of it will wear off, but I am milking it for all I can.
I am very optimistic about this new strategy. I am tired of being frustrated with the system I have now (which is none), so this is plan B. I don't guarantee it will work, but I will try my best until I need plan C...D...or E. Like I said, parenting is hard and constantly changing. If you have other suggestions, I would love to hear them!
(The jar on the left is where they get their beads from- its the mom & dad jar, their jar is on the right and they are trying to get it to the red ribbon).


  1. I like that idea - I use a similiar approach in my classroom, but with marbles instead. My only suggestion is to make sure it doesn't take too long to reach the line, otherwise, it will lose its effectiveness. :)

  2. It's working great so far! They are eager to earn beads. I bought smaller glass vases, just for that reason you suggested. And we got large beads. I was amazed at how everyone worked together last night to get the house cleaned up. Izzy wanted to call you today Carrie, she is missing you!

  3. Glad to hear it is working Stephanie!

    I am missing Izzy (and the rest of you) too. Can we please set up at Skype date?


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